From George Evens. Open Letter to Politicians & Seniors
– Recognizing International Day of Older Person October 1st – locally proclaimed by Mission Council, please try to attend and celebrate with Senior Colleagues at Mission Seniors Centre Assn. holding a, By Donation, Lunch at 11:30am in the (Centre); Part-Two, A growing trend, potentially exorbitant cost & massive social impact, “Hearing Loss, caused primarily by NOISE, impacting younger generations” This alarming Four-Part Series runs September to December, a “MUST READ for all who can currently hear”. Support for Private members Bills, may be a National “good idea”? “Homeless in Canada a legacy of bad Government policy & decisions epitomized by City of Abbotsford uncaring actions?”
Picture of George courtesy of Carol Aun – Mission Record Newspaper
Here is a link to the Mission Seniors’ Living 55 Plus, published the last Thursday monthly. The e-edition is available at http://www.missioncityrecord.com/eeditions/ The Sun (most recent on Elder abuse) & Province have done some good articles, thus, each Community paper can augment and help bring information & solutions to the many dilemma’s facing Seniors but caring is the first obstacle or challenge to be met. The Province series Boomerangst gives a good overview of Seniors’ needs, refer to http://www.theprovince.com/news/boomerangst/our-aging-society.html
EDITORIALLY SPEAKING OF COURSE BUT-
* The Council Advocacy calls upon allies of people, finances and resources from around the World, in many diverse endeavours, via altruistic & caring measures. Keep in mind, this is not your typical Newsletter, many complain & do nothing constructive, whereas, The Council & ECAC, “News To You Newsletters” has established a public expectation to “tell it how it actually is, factual, questioning Journalism, no political correctness, no sacred-cows, no “political “spin” but equally important to be pro-active”. Remember, when progressive Leaders, important (decision makers) and astute VOTERS want factual opinions, they can trust, they consult “News To You Newsletters” as the reliable, informed, compassionate/empathetic source. Read carefully, keep an open-mind, broaden your ‘attention span’ and you will learn something….. Remember News To You identify “talking Points for required Media publication, so, if you do not find coverage in mainstream media – ask why not? Remember, local Media are more preoccupied with “control of space, topics & revenue, not substance of reporting/information and at best, seek to “dumb-down” information. It is at one’s own peril to ignore stated facts, to place one’s head in the sand and not rejoice at having a sound choice to make. The News To You Newsletter seek to follow these basic rules:
1. Open discussion of ideas, values and priorities together with the expression of opinion is the basis for shaping effective and meaningful action
2. The phony prominence derived from elected office (Legislature, Municipal Council, Chamber of Commerce or Non-Profit Association) status neither promises omniscience nor protection from criticism from fellow citizens. The apparent fact that local (papers) will not criticize does not imply that others won’t or shouldn’t.
* Private Members Bill, firstname.lastname@example.org proposing Bill C-518 pertaining to “Loss of Senator or Member of Parliament, Pension if convicted, if sitting on June 3, 2013. Sounds like a reasonable start, suggest you offer your support to John and c.c. Prime Minister & Opposition Party Leaders.
* Homeless in Canada, add a diminishing “Middle Class”, stir heavily with loss of jobs and a major outcome is “Homeless”. Sadly, as is often the case, (statistics lie) and often fail to be true and accurate reflection of actual unemployment. Throw in lots of “Bafflegab” notably by Government, at all levels and Homeless surfaces as a major factor in the sad plight of millions in North America. But in Canada, for our purposes, we find Government in BC, for example, placing Mental Health Patients back in Society, with few if any actual “safety nets”, certainly not (housing) to replace the Institution closed, that was home to many in need. Then, lets mess up more, and add “Drug Addiction” to the mix of unfortunates, ensuring (Privacy Acts) protects, in part, Government need to explain, claiming (privacy you know). If Government is empathetic, plans strategy and places safety nets and housing provision in place, the dilemma is remedied in large part but if like City of Abbotsford (a prime example of contempt, lack of respect and indifference toward Citizens less fortunate). This is exacerbated by revolving door Health Ministers, who, frankly “do not know their ass from a hole in the ground”, I am told, then we witness the debacle in play right now. Worse, like at City of Abbotsford, the “relocation of so-called “Homeless” camps without plan or empathy, and as might be predictable, the Media has now got its teeth in Abbotsford’s butt. The three factors at play and in conflict, that need to be addressed are;
· Homeless – Financial based, in part, caused by Free Trade Agreements, Immigration = job loss, that in due course produces an endless “Homeless dilemma”, this is (muddied) and exacerbated by lumping in more (homeless) from unrelated sources.
· Homeless – Mental Health based, lack of Institutions for those needing this institutionalized protection, such as reopening Riverdale would address, in part. Mental Health reasons exacerbates Police costs and manpower to deal with increasing incidents, again, by “Homeless”, they rationalize.
· Homeless – Drug Addiction based, that of course, “we cannot force addicts into rehab, so, let’s exacerbate the (Homeless) dilemma, lump in (Drug Addicts) and by conveniently using “Mental Health & Drug Addiction” we bafflegab the Public into believing “Homeless is a composition of the three, very complicated, you know?
· Homeless camps, a self-preservation attempt to providing oneself with shelter, of sorts, is not met with understanding, empathy and cooperation, if like City of Abbotsford, too many (wrong thinking) Bureaucrats & Politicians are indifferent, ignorant and lack respect, we find “manure spread in an attempt to chase Homeless away” but that (blew up in the faces of perpetrators and heaped shame upon Abbotsford the so-called “Bible Belt of God fearing Christians”, right! We just witnessed another relocation of the Homeless Camp, to no avail, the problem and its causes still prevail. My word, what is a poor (Politician) to do. For example, leaving Church the Mayor is met with accolades from some parishioners, “Good job Mr. Mayor, we support you, get the slackers out of Abbotsford”. Then we find Abbotsford Community Services rightly proposing a 20 unit Housing project, to first provide housing, yet, God fearing Business (Leaders) oppose location. So, the Mayor looks at these peers (supporters & votes) decides better to punish the homeless. The first step is recognition and to accept this is a temporary approach, so work with the camp dwellers to make their lives more palatable, while inept politicians seek solutions; assign locales, introduce a hierarchy to recognize (camp leaders) and agree to standards of aesthetics, hygiene needs, install a number of plastic garbage bag lined cans, install a large garbage dump bin and pick-up by the City; install several porta potties. Work in conjunction with facilities and organizations like Salvation Army, exclude any requirements to be religious inspired to get help, and arrange shower & washroom facilities, laundry facilities, small steps to give respect and permit some self-respect of camp dwellers. Simply, the first step is like Abbotsford Community Services demand, shelter
· THE LEARNING PAGE – offers sage advice and counsel to all Humans, with some focus upon Seniors’ but seeks to explore and thus, provide you with proven successful “Management skills & techniques” to improve your productivity, informed decision making & stimulate your creativity, innovation and contribution to Society. It is “look in the mirror time”.
* A Mission Seniors’ Dream, “An Activity Centre within my lifetime”. The Seniors’ Centre Task Force makes it report to Mission Council this month – what is in store for Seniors’?The basic Seniors’ Activity Centre should initially be approx. 12,000 sq. ft in size (with expansion five years hence to 15,000 sq ft and maybe in 10 years hence expansion to 20,000 sq. ft). It should be erected as a cement structure, possibly tilt-up sections, adjacent the Leisure Centre, on the 2 acre District owned property, to mitigate building costs, with any zoning change facilitated by Council. Being adjacent the Leisure Centre incorporates use of available services, such as weight training, swimming pool and other applicable amenities used by Seniors’. Located on easy access Bus route. We envisage incorporating a several story above/beneath ground parking façade. In addition, consideration, to above ground 2-3 story housing, incorporating some low-cost Seniors’ Housing, possible inclusion of several 300 sq. ft, single suites, in a mix of market housing, to facilitate a cost-saving viable venture. Actual services may vary upon determined interest and need but our web. site www.thecouncilclaw.ca affords viewing like new Seniors’ Activity Centre’s at Pitt Meadows, as well, Maple-Ridge, Coquitlam and West Vancouver. We await the Seniors’ Activity Centre Task Force proposals.
* What do Politicians like the most about VOTERS? Given most (Politicians) have an established group of “follow at any cost mentality supporters”, they love to witness low voter turnout, a thriving apathy and when the eligible VOTERS become aroused, seek “change” and a higher voter turn-out is anticipated, we occasionally find the “weak leave the sinking ship and not seek re-election”.
* Possibly the single greatest demand upon VOTERS everywhere, whether to elect “Boards at Associations” or “Politicians” the more pronounced qualities desired in Candidates include their exuding “empathy”, just as being wary of persons to avoid, the “passive bystanders”, thus the qualities of sound ethics and values that set true “Leaders” apart from the pack – take the time to research Candidates carefully, set high standards and vote for people who meet needs. “We are only limited by the imagination of our Leaders”.
* International Day of the Older Person October 1st
Proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly on December 14, 1990 this important date is recognized annually on October 1st. In his 2012 address, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stated, “Longevity is a public health achievement not a social or economic liability. On this day, let us pledge to ensure the well-being of older persons and to enlist their meaningful participation in Society so we can all benefit from their knowledge”. Further, he stated, “Rapid population ageing and a steady increase in human longevity worldwide represent one of the greatest social, economic and political transformations of our time. These demographic changes will affect every community, family and person. They demand that we rethink how individuals live, work, plan and learn throughout their lifetimes”.
The 2012 (theme) Longevity: “Shaping the future” is followed this year 2013 with the theme being “The Future We want: “What older persons are saying”. To accommodate Older person a survey is being conducted and all can enter their six priority views at www.myworld2015.org
International Day of Older Persons seeks to create awareness about issues, such as, senescence (the biological aspect of ageing) and elder abuse (defined as a lack of appropriate action occurring within any relationship where there is an expectation of trust, which causes harm or distress to an older person) among other issues and to “recognize and appreciate contributions that older people make to Society”. Additional areas of focus include inequality, poverty eradication, health, food security and population dynamics, among others. Supporting the aims of International Day of Older Persons is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day June 15th.
The observance is a focus of ageing organizations, it is a global observance and not a public holiday. Caring people, including (Politicians) particularly those responsible for government departments that focus upon senior citizens, Municipal Governments proclaim their observance, Politicians make speeches, promotional materials are predominantly displayed in schools, some radio, television or newspapers publish interviews or articles by senior citizens on various issues, such as (Government or Associations) achievements they made to create a better society, such as promoting older persons, inter-generational cooperation on voluntary activities focused on the environment, health, education or community services.
Discussions continue on such topics as ageing populations and the provision of adequate healthcare for aged persons, volunteer work, social care and ways to be more inclusive of older persons in the workforce & community.
“DELIBERATELY STUPID AWARD” – This ‘infamous’ increasingly popular, recognized authority is awarded to the most deserving, the misguided, arrogant, self-centered & truly ignorant among us but the “deliberately stupid” category is a truly heartfelt distinction not that many, fortunately, can aspire to & attain..
v (Repeat) Fraser Health Authority decision to impose pay parking at Mission Memorial Hospital in 5 years, prompting expansion of ongoing (current) protest to eliminate pay parking at Hospitals, by adding a protest to prohibit FHA & Mission Council from proceeding with an agreement to add MMH to the list of Hospital charging (unacceptable) parking fees.
v Closed Minded People, those who (oppose) anything they do not understand or sometimes (more understandable) disagree with, those unwilling to consider (new) or (different) ideas, who (complain to themselves but seldom, if ever, speak-out publicly); those who simply “request to be deleted from distribution lists of any entity they do not understand BUT WORSE CLOSE THEIR MIND TO FINDING TRUTH OR FACTS”, simply perpetuating the complacency, apathy, ignorance, indifference and retro-grade thinkers that sadly, harm COMMUNITY PROGRESS AND REMAIN A LIABILITY TO ANY ORGANIZATIONS THEY SERVE.
v Heinous acts that bring utmost shame upon Humans as a (thinking, intelligent) species but equally upon a Profession/Industry, that stand out as examples of the utmost “scum-sucking bottom feeders(had to use this saying someone mentioned to me, as sadly, no words exist to adequately describe the behavior/act of individuals identified for this “horrific honour of Human contempt” but not to be so tolerant and pussy-foot around more, joining the massive public contempt toward the inhumane Seal killing that Government has condoned for years we add the equally and/or similarly disgusting repugnant acts of but first, let me hasten to add, the individual may be upon an “Individual” but equally responsible is the so-called (elected Representative, such as MP or MLA, Council member, who through indifference, insensitivity, utter stupid ignorance, will (do nothing constructive to remedy) and rather will condone, tolerate, “make excuses to support the offender”, and so our list continues with:
§ Trophy Hunting – such a vile and senseless act of utmost cruelty, too often with high-power rifle equipped with sight, a Human actually kills an Animal, dismembers to seek parts for subsequent display, such as paws, head, antlers and so forth, discarding the remaining part to rot but not to be undone, a (Politician) actually justifying this horrendous act, reviled by vast majority of people, will claim justification as “sustainable, legal, high revenue source)
§ Police brutality – such as the cases resulting in a $230,000.00 legal cost by City of Victoria, to fight an action by a victim, with the complete event caught on video,, police officers kicking, punching a victim on the ground, then the audacity of the Police Chief to actually claim, “several Officers viewed the video and feel it was justified, not an reasonable force, they are (trained) to do. My word, this is not what the Public expect nor demand from those employed to Serve & Protect. Reminiscent of the Braidwood Inquiry to the YVR despicable Police behavior. But not to be outdone, the recent killing of the young man, who presumably at one point had a knife, while still on a bus, was shot point-blank six or more times, some while down, and Police actually tried to justify, again. Clearly and unequivocally, a major review & reform of all Police policy, procedures and processes is mandatory, just as the complete current (wrong) approach to the penal justice system is years overdue and crucial the two proceed poste haste, to create a Justice system Canadians can become proud of, even to the extent, we alluded to elsewhere in past Newsletters, a segment of Society has achieved their (Peters Principle) and must be phased out, to avoid further hamr under the guise of established legal practice, at present, sadly in the eyes of some wrong people in positions of authority.
The “Political” future is unfolding with cautiously optimistic opportunities
We need to “rebuild” the ‘Political system” and reinvigorate the Voters confidence in ‘creating and managing political change needed to restore Voter trust & confidence, including wise & thoughtful realignments of revenue streams to augment “Government coffers”, to eliminate a culture of crass, partisan evasion and lack of sincerity, some paths include.
· Next major public movement, most likely Seniors’ & expansion of the “Silver Tsunami” (a major growing Seniors’ movement, lacking co-ordination/organization of the whole but significant organization among throngs of Seniors’ groups across North America) – The common denominator of public protests, “long-standing issues not being effectively addressed”…..currently the “yell for attention” – next COMMON GOALS/ACTION by any astute Government!
· Canada & Provinces need “Democratic Reforms”, free votes, independent Committees and more powerful ‘Back Benchers”.
· The days of prorogued Government, Omnibus Bills and Autocratic Style, with “no dissent” MUST GO; a need to shake-up things if you want to change the dominant consensus or you’re never going to get progressive & fair change”.
· Simple & fundamental change is needed, abandoning “Leader dictatorship” and “creating effective Recall”, reinstating the Constituent as the primary beneficiary.
* MISSION “ELECTION 2014” – Are Mission & Abbotsford Councils performing, who is/who is not? It is time to start planning our ‘election campaign’ to attract, if needed, a (New Mayor & Council). CRMG (Mission) identified the successful process, a needed (SLATE) approach & typical campaign to achieve a renewal of Council, so let’s make more wise Candidate choices but the campaign process is before us. Will CRMG (Abbotsford) be fielding Candidates? Are any incumbents at Mission or Abbotsford not running for re-election? Seniors’ hold the balance of (votes) to elect a new Council. Will incumbent members of Council and/or new candidates, agree to abolish Parking Fees at local Hospitals – may be an Election November 2014 issue?
Some Important dates to remember
· Thursday October 3, 2013, 10:30am, Mission Seniors Centre Association meeting at Mission Community Activity Centre ALL SENIORS’ are encouraged to attend this meeting, as sanction of new Bylaws is on the Agenda and requires member approval; JOIN or RENEW MSCA ($10 Annual dues – help plan activities – YOUR SENIOR VOICE, LEADERSHIP, SUPPORT & WISDOM is needed more than ever NOW! VOLUNTEERS are needed.
· Thursday October 10, Mission Seniors’ Advisory Committee monthly meeting at Mission Seniors’ Centre (venue change) – What is MSAC doing? Is MSAC attracting “the BEST” Senior Leaders? Does MISSION need one STRONG (Umbrella) organization to (represent) Seniors’ & secure an Activity Centre? An “Age Friendly” community needs a “steering Committee” – who?
Note: Please email me any important Seniors’ dates throughout the year, that recognize any Seniors’ accomplishment or issues, such as Elder Abuse Awareness Day June 15th, Seniors’ Week, etc.
Some Important web.sites to become aware of & informed about Seniors’ issues
* The Elder Citizen Action Coalition – www.thecouncilclaw.ca ‘click’ CONTENTS. The “cutting-edge Leadership for Seniors’ in Canada – Seniors’ unite & organize; NOW on ECAC site, 23 pictures of the impressive “New” Pitt Meadows Seniors’ Activity Centre (adjoining “The Wesbrooke Seniors’Living Community”
* District of Mission – www.mission.ca – watch Council meetings in progress LIVE VIA WEB CAST or check back anytime to view any topic or issues
* COSCO “Council of Seniors Citizens’ Organizations” www.coscobc.ca – 80 affiliated organizations; 85,000 senior members – The “Joys & Tears Conference” notes now posted
* OMBUDSPERSON – www.bcombudsperson.ca – A Roadmap To Better Seniors’ Care In B.C., A Summary of BC Ombudsperson Report – 176 detailed recommendations. Subscribe to receive email updates at http://www.ombudsman.bc.ca/subscribe Simply, “The Ministry of Health has, in many cases, failed to fulfill its leadership role for Seniors’ care in B.C.”.
* Elder Advocacy & Support (BCCEAS) – www.bcceas.ca (8% or 61,000 Seniors’ in B.C. experience abuse).
* NEW! Mission Seniors’ Activity Centre new web.site www.missionseniorscentre.com
· “The Council Advocacy”, “The Council Animal Advocacy (CLAW)” and now “The Elder Citizen Action Coalition (ECAC)” are private owned, operated, non-profit, apolitical and pro-active organizations. ECAC is on the ‘cutting edge’ of the “silver tsunami” with the potential to represent millions of like-minded Seniors’ who share our values, thus our sphere of influence is massive.
· ECAC always represent the majority of public interests & public opinion & convey “responsible communication on all matters of public interest. The rallying call, “Unity In Challenging Times” *** Passion *** Persistence *** Power *** Progress